Finding a good pediatrician for your children is crucial to their health and development. However, not all doctors are created equal. Every office has a different feel. Instead of forcing your child to go to a place that scares them to death, turning every visit into a huge fiasco, take the time to find the right one. The first step is to ask for referrals from trusted friends and family. It is also a good idea to check with your insurance to find pediatricians in the area that are covered. Once you have a few in mind, take things a step further by stepping into their practice or scheduling an appointment to meet with them. Ask ahead of time if these visits are free or have a small fee. Upon meeting with a pediatrician, here are a few ways to figure out if they are a good pediatrician, or if they are the right one for you.
1-Common Goals. Keep in mind that every family is different. Some mothers are very concerned about breastfeeding, while others have different priorities. Discussing your personal priorities with a potential pediatrician will help you to determine if they will be a support through any problems you may have. For example, some parents are very strongly anti-vaccinations. Discussing this upfront with a pediatrician may make or break the relationship. Some pediatricians will treat the matter with respect, while others will laugh an individual out of their office. If something means a lot to you, don't settle for a doctor who can't see things the same way.
2-Office Practices. Every office has different procedures. For example, some doctors work in a group while other pediatricians practice alone. If you are choosing a pediatrician who is a part of a group, who will you be working with for the most part? In an emergency will you be assigned to the most available doctor or will yours come to the rescue personally? How do they handle anxious parents who have many questions? Do they answer emails or does every question need an office visit? If the latter is the case, a worried new parent could end up spending a fortune on their child's healthcare.
3-Rapport. Rapport is the quality of a relationship between two people. Sometimes rapport comes easily, like with a spouse or a close friend. Other times, conversation feels awkward and difficult. When finding a doctor for your child, look for one who you can really talk to. Rapport with a provider will change every doctor visit for the better.
Now that you know a few ways to figure out if a pediatrician is right for you, start visiting pediatric offices in your area, such as Ada Pediatrics PA.